resort polynesian castle monorail
  • On Mar 2, 2022
    Sasha from IN Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Do you have to stay at a Disney resort in order to get into the parks?

    Hello Sasha,

    Thanks for stopping by planDisney with your question. It's exciting that you are planning a visit to the World's Most Magical Celebration. There is so much to see and do throughout Walt Disney World, you are sure to create some special memories.

    Although it's convenient and fun to stay at one of the hotels in the Disney Resorts Collection, it is not required to be able to enjoy the parks. You can certainly stay at another hotel outside of Walt Disney World, rent a vacation home, or even stay with relatives or friends who live nearby. You only need two things to get into one of the four parks, 1) a park ticket and 2) a park reservation.

    If you know exactly when you are planning to travel, I recommend checking the park availability calendar to make sure that the parks you want to visit are still have reservations available. You don't want to buy tickets hoping to visit Magic Kingdom and then find out it's full. When you look at the dates on the calendar there are three colors: green means all parks are available, yellow means only some parks are available, and gray means all parks have been booked. If the date you are planning on visiting is yellow, click on that date to see which parks are still available.

    Once you've found out the park you want is available, you are ready to purchase your tickets! There are several options for theme park tickets, ranging from a basic 1 park per day ticket to multiple day tickets with the ability to visit multiple parks as well as water parks and other activities throughout Walt Disney World. So you can purchase tickets based on how much time you have to visit and what you want to see while you are there.

    Once you've purchased your tickets, you need to make a reservation for the parks that you want to visit each day. If you add the Park Hopper Option to your tickets so that you can visit more than one park in a day, you only have to make a reservation for the first park you plan to go to. 

    Hope this helps. Have a magical vacation!
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Meet the Panelist: Diane, Georgia

After spending 25 years in RI, my husband and I relocated to GA with our youngest, who is now in high school. I took my first trip to Walt Disney World when I was 11 and I have traveled many times since then with all different party sizes. From creating our first itinerary as a honeymooner to later creating magical experiences for our multigenerational family gatherings, every aspect of planning a vacation has been pure joy to me.  Learn More About Diane

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